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Maryland football’s Damian Prince hopes to bring his dependability to an NFL team

Our draft profile series continues with a four-year starter on the Terps’ offensive line.

NCAA Football: Maryland at Wisconsin Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

When Damian Prince committed to Maryland football on National Signing Day 2014, it was one of the Terps’ most exciting recruiting moments of the decade. Prince was the nation’s No. 27 overall prospect and No. 2 offensive tackle, and Maryland beat out plenty of blue-blood competitors.

While he didn’t quite become a superstar in College Park, Prince still blossomed into one of the Big Ten’s best and most dependable linemen. After redshirting his first season, he was a constant presence each of his last four years, starting 39 games in his career and 33 since 2016. This past season, he earned a Third Team All-Big Ten selection from the media.

Prince considered turning pro last year, but returned for his final season. While he hasn’t received much buzz throughout this draft cycle, he still has an outside shot at being drafted and should earn a serious look either way. Like we did with Ty Johnson and Derwin Gray earlier this week, let’s take a more in-depth look at Prince’s pro outlook. We’ll return with defensive draft profiles next week.

The numbers

Height: 6’3
Weight: 320

Prince didn’t attend the NFL combine, and his pro day numbers haven’t been widely reported. He was clocked with a very unofficial 40-yard dash range of 5.46 - 5.51.

What an NFL team is getting

Like fellow veteran tackle Derwin Gray, Prince’s specialty last season was his pass blocking. According to Pro Football Focus, he allowed no sacks, three QB hits, five QB hurries and just eight total pressures, ranking No. 23 among all offensive linemen in pass-blocking efficiency.

While Prince missed three games last season, he was as much of a constant as anything related to Maryland football over the last four years. He started 39 games for the Terps, including 33 in his last three seasons. He could also be counted on to show discipline, being flagged for just two penalties last season and 18 in his career, per PFF.

Prince could also give teams an option at either tackle or guard. While he played primarily right tackle for the Terps, he spent some time on the interior line earlier in his career. When he drew buzz for the 2018 draft in May 2017 — yes, quite the guessing game — it was as a guard. He never kicked inside as an upperclassmen, but that option still remains for whichever franchise takes a chance on him.

Draft projections

Prince’s name has come up sparingly even in extended mock drafts, but his PFF rating exceeded 62 in each of his four seasons. As noted here, 60 is considered the threshold for being at least a backup in the pros, and 70 — which Prince surpassed as a junior — correlates to a potential starter.

While Prince has seemed destined to at least earn an NFL opportunity since high school, it seems more likely than not that he’ll have to prove himself as an undrafted free agent. It’s unclear whether his eventual team will see him as a tackle or guard, but wherever he winds up, Prince has the talent to content for a spot.